In a scathing assessment of the demonetisation exercise, former prime minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday said the “scars and wounds” it caused are getting more visible with time and the decision’s second anniversary is a day to remember how “economic misadventures” can roil the nation.
The senior Congress leader asked the government to not resort to further unorthodox, short-term economic measures that can cause any more uncertainty in the economy.
Describing demonetisation as an “ill-fated” and “ill-thought” exercise, Singh said in a statement that the havoc it unleashed on the Indian economy and society is now evident to everyone.
On November 8, 2016, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a ban on then in use Rs 1,000 and Rs 500 denomination bank notes with immediate effect.
On Thursday, finance minister Arun Jaitley said demonetisation resulted in formalisation of the economy and increased tax base, prompting the government to earmark more resources for the poor and infrastructure development.
In a Facebook post on the second anniversary of demonetisation, Jaitley said in first four years of the NDA government, the number of income tax returns filers has gone up to 6.86 crore from 3.8 crore in May 2014.
By the time the first five years of this government are over, we will be close to doubling the assessee base, he said in the post titled ‘Impact Of Demonetisation’.
Terming the criticism that almost the entire cash money got deposited in the banks post-demonetisation, as ill-informed, Jaitley said confiscation of currency was not an objective of the exercise.